Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Banks of the River Seine


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 107 × 156 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLIII 64

Catalogue entry

The page contains a sketch, drawn horizontally, of high hills coming down to the water’s edge. Finberg called it simply ‘River banks’,1 but the location has been further specified as a view of the Seine between Le Havre and Rouen.2 Preceding drawings in the sketchbook are of Jumièges, the following of river views, and then the town of Duclair, consistent with Turner travelling eastwards upriver and indicating that this sketch can be specified further to a view from the Seine between Jumièges and Duclair.
Art historian Ian Warrell notes that this drawing (as well as folio 63 verso opposite; D23823) formed the preliminary sketch3 for Turner’s watercolour, The Banks of the Seine near Jumièges and Duclair, Normandy, c.1832 (Tate D24638; Turner Bequest CCLIX 73), and was also the source4 for another watercolour of about the same date, The Banks of the Seine near Jumièges, Normandy (Tate D24783; Turner Bequest CCLIX 218). Turner captures the rocky high hills and small clumps of trees below in a few simple lines.

Caroline South
May 2017

Finberg 1909, II, p.770.
?Ian Warrell, ‘Turner on the Seine: Topographical Index’, c.1999, Prints and Drawings Room, Tate Britain (printout in copy of Warrell 1999), p.5.
Warrell 1999, p.271 no.95.
Warrell 1999, p.271 no.97.

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